Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Racing into the Unknown: A Canadian’s Patagonian Adventure

Richard Dunwoody photo - Full Article

Central Alberta vet Christian Peterson finished third in the inaugural Gaucho Derby, then had to race for home as international travel shut down.

By: Róisín Magee | May 13, 2020

When Chris Peterson got the call informing him he had a spot in a 500-km race across the Patagonian wilderness in South America on horseback, he only had four months to prepare ‒ but he loves a challenge.

Having worked with beef cattle outfits off and on since he was a teenager, guided horseback trips in Wyoming and Banff where he had packed strings of four to eight horses and mules, worked as a farrier, and logged timber for a few years with draft horses in the East Kootenays of BC, he was also not afraid of hard work. In his ‘spare time’ he started colts for friends, enjoyed riding rodeo broncs, and competed in blacksmith contests on the weekends.

Chris graduated from veterinary school in 2016 and is now working as a vet in and around Calgary. Divorced with two children aged 15 and 19, the busy 44-year-old thanks the influence of a neighbour who is a keen endurance rider for getting him interested in the sport. Although he did not compete, he credits the hours and miles of conditioning he did aboard a half-Morgan in the mountains outside of Windermere for a few seasons with his ability to ride long distance in steep country without wearing out his horse...

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